Thursday, May 19, 2011

Dark landslide near van Gent

A landslide within a small crater near 43 kilometer, far side crater van Gent (15.4°N, 160.4 °E). The crater rim is at the and the crater floor is at bottom left. The landslide has exposed many boulder within the crater wall. LROC Narrow Angle Camera (NAC) observation M156550640RE, LRO orbit 8205, April 4, 2011; image field of view is 600 meters. See the full-size LROC Featured Image HERE [NASA/GSFC/Arizona State University].

Drew Enns
LROC News System

Landslides are a common form of mass wasting on both the Moon and on Earth. This process exposes fresh material, and results in high albedo features in planetary images. Impact craters perform a similar process, with fresh craters creating high albedo features on planets.

This landslide is lower albedo than the crater walls of the crater it occurs in, implying the landslide is more mature than the crater. How can this be? It is probably that the landslide surface is not exposing fresh material, but is instead mature highlands material that has fallen back into the crater.

Crop of the LROC Wide Angle Camera monochrome mosaic context image for the LROC Featured Image, May 18, 2011, situated in the white box. Field of view is 40 kilometers. See the full context image HERE [NASA/GSFC/Arizona State University].

Look for more landslides in the entire LROC NAC!

Related Posts:
Post impact modification of Klute W
Landslides in Marius Crater
Dark streaks in Diophantus

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